SoundMeter now offers Octave data logging on iPhone and iPad

For some time, SoundMeter has offered an optional in-app upgrade that would allow users to log sound level and noise dose measurements for up to two weeks. Version 8.1 adds an upgrade to allow whole and 1/3 octave sound levels to be logged for similar durations. The Octave Data Logging Upgrade will be made available within SoundMeter to users who have already purchased the Octave Analyzer Upgrade.

OctaveSurf

When Octave data logging is enabled, logged levels are displayed in a 2D color surface plot below the standard Octave spectrum graph. The color scale is defined by the vertical scale of the spectrum graph. A data cursor may be placed within the log plot to identify specific levels associated with date,  time, and frequency band.

Octave data can be logged as often as every 0.1 seconds for up to 1 hour, every second for up to 10 hours, or every 10 seconds for up to two weeks. Larger intervals can also be specified in each case.

When data logging is enabled, logged levels will also be included when saving data to a CSV, TXT, or MAT
file. (Saving data in SoundMeter requires the Data Acquisition Upgrade, sold separately.)

SoundMeter Pro includes all the functionality of SoundMeter plus that of SoundMeter’s in-app upgrades. Current SoundMeter Pro users get the additional Octave data logging functionality for free.

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OctaveLog

iOS Audio Hardware: Stereo input via USB

If you’re looking for a way to acquire stereo input signals in apps like SignalScope Pro or IOScope, you’ll be pleased to know that you can connect a USB audio device to your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch via Apple’s Lightning to USB Camera Adapter. Built-in USB audio support in iOS opens up a vast array of options for getting audio signals into, and out of, your iOS device. (USB audio support on iPhone and iPod touch requires iOS 7 or later.)

Compatibility

The trick is to find a device that conforms to the USB Audio Device Class specification, which essentially means that no special drivers are required when connecting the device to a host, like a Mac or an iPhone. Some device manufacturers clearly state that their product works with iOS and some do not. In general, if you find a USB audio device that does not require special drivers to work with Mac OS, then it will work with iOS as well.

Power

One thing to consider when selecting a USB audio device to connect to your iPhone or iPad is power. Some USB audio devices require an external power source, which means portability will be somewhat limited due to the need to have an A/C power outlet nearby. Other devices support USB bus power, which means they’ll draw their power from the host device (e.g. the iPhone). For portability, this would be the ideal situation since the iPhone and input device could be completely portable and operate for the life of the iPhone’s battery. However, only low-power devices can be directly powered by an iPhone or iPad, which means that a lot of otherwise compatible USB audio devices cannot be connected to iOS without some other source of power. For bus-powered USB devices that require more power, it is possible to maintain some portability with a USB battery power supply and an additional adapter cable.

A Few Examples (portable and inexpensive)

Stereo USB Audio Devices
Behringer UCA202
The UCA202 from Behringer offers very inexpensive and portable stereo input for iOS.

It features:

  • 16-bit/48 kHz sampling
  • 2 inputs and 2 outputs with RCA jacks
  • Headphone output with volume control (1/8″ jack)
  • Low power operation so it can be powered directly by an iPhone or iPad
  • S/PDIF optical digital output
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Behringer UFO202
The Behringer UFO202 is similar to the UCA202. Instead of a digital output, it offers the option to select between line-level and phono preamp input.
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ART USB Dual Pre
Another inexpensive option, which also adds mic preamps with switchable 48V phantom power, is the USB Dual Pre from ART.

It features:

  • 16-bit/48 kHz sampling
  • 2 inputs with XLR / 1/4″ combo jacks for mic preamp or line-level input
  • 2 outputs with 1/4″ jacks
  • Headphone output with volume control
  • Low power operation so it can be powered directly by an iPhone or iPad
  • Switchable 48V phantom power, powered from a 9V battery
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Adapters
Apple Lightning to USB Camera Adapter
This adapter is all that’s needed to connect a compatible USB audio device to an iPhone, iPad or iPod touch with a Lightning connector. As indicated above, if your USB device needs additional power, additional components will be needed. That will be discussed in a separate article.
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Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit
If you have an older iPhone or iPad with a 30-pin dock connector, you can connect a USB audio device with the USB adapter included in this kit. Remember that iOS 7 is required for USB audio on iPhone.
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Real-time 3D Spectrogram now available in SignalScope for iOS

Faber Acoustical is pleased to announce that a live Spectrogram tool is now available for purchase within SignalScope and SignalScope Pro. The Spectrogram tool is offered in both 2D and 3D versions. The 3D Spectrogram includes all the functionality of the 2D version and adds powerful hardware-accelerated 3D plotting capabilities including a live 3D surface plot. A 3D upgrade is available to those who opt to purchase the 2D version.

3D Spectrogram

The real-time Spectrogram plots FFT-based spectral data versus time in a colorful surface plot. Signal magnitude at each time and frequency is represented by color. Use single-finger tap and drag to place a data cursor within the plot. When the cursor is visible, details regarding time, frequency, and magnitude will be displayed above the plot.

Main Features (available in both versions of the Spectrogram tool:

  • Frequency resolutions between 1 Hz and 50 Hz, depending on sample rate, may be specified for audio input (between 1 Hz and 10 Hz for the built-in accelerometer).
  • Input data can be windowed with one of 7 different FFT data window types.
  • Spectrogram data can be captured over time periods ranging from 2 to 20 seconds.
  • Lin, log, and dB magnitude scales with Up, Down, or Full auto-scaling.
  • Lin and log frequency scales.
  • Fractional-octave band frequency smoothing in 1/6, 1/12, and 1/24-octave bands.
  • Cursor peak track can track peaks in time, frequency, or both.
  • Color scale bar graph enables manual adjustment of magnitude scale and offset. The color scale can also be hidden.
  • Data may be exported to CVS, MAT, or TXT files for post processing or plotting. Optionally, include GPS location information with exported data. (The data export option is included in SignalScope Pro. It requires the Data Acquisition upgrade, sold separately, in the standard version of SignalScope.)
  • Optionally save a high-resolution PDF file of the spectrogram plot, or save an image to your Photos library.

3D Spectrogram Features:

  • Choose between 2D and 3D surface plots. Each plot can be drawn live (in real time).
  • Trackball-style 3D rotation of the 3D surface plot, just by dragging a single finger across the plot.
  • Tap with a single finger to place a cursor within the 3D plot.
  • In 3D, the cursor outlines the time and frequency slice associated with its current location.
  • Optional grid planes for each axis (magnitude vs. frequency, magnitude vs. time, and frequency vs. time) are drawn at the bounds of the 3D plotting region.
  • By default, the 3D spectrogram is drawn as a surface and magnitude values are represented by both position and color. The surface can be turned off, which allows data to be drawn only as a mesh.
  • The 3D spectrogram data can be seen as a solid-colored mesh (the mesh draws nothing between its lines or points). The mesh can be overlaid on the surface or drawn alone.
  • The mesh can be drawn as lines in time, lines in frequency, or lines across both time and frequency. It can alternatively be drawn as a series of dots, each one representing a single spectrogram data point.
  • When only viewing the 3D spectrogram data as a mesh, the time and frequency slices outlined by the cursor show through the mesh, making it very easy to see them in the midst of the rest of the data.

Also new in SignalScope and SignalScope Pro:

  • GPS coordinates, altitude, and accuracy may now optionally be saved with FFT, Spectrogram, or Oscope data when exporting to a data file (Data Acquisition Upgrade required in SignalScope).
  • Downloaded frequency response data for connected microphones will automatically be saved in a file in the Frequency_Response_Data folder to make it easier to access at a later time.
  • Smarter selection of the maximum frequency when FFT data smoothing is enabled.
  • Fixed an issue with Full Autoscale in the FFT analyzer.
  • Other minor cosmetic improvements and bug fixes.

Download SignalScope Pro 6.0

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SoundMeter 8 includes companion app for Apple Watch

SoundMeter 8.0 and SoundMeter Pro 4.0, which are both now available for download on the App Store, each include a companion app for Apple Watch. With the Watch app, you can monitor the current sound level, spectrum, and/or noise dose from your wrist (requires iOS 8.2 and iPhone 5 or later). These new versions of SoundMeter add other significant features, as well, including background sound level measurements and notifications of exceeded levels. The original sound level meter app for iPhone has now become the original sound level meter app for Apple Watch.

SoundMeter’s companion app for Apple Watch includes a separate screen for each of SoundMeter’s available tools running on the iPhone (new tools added to SoundMeter via in-app purchase are also supported in the companion app). Each tool can be started or stopped from the watch and current measurement values are updated on the watch display each second. The new notifications feature in SoundMeter allows the user to be notified on the Apple Watch when certain events occur. Notifications can be triggered when measurements stop (using the Auto-Stop feature) or when certain user-defined levels are exceeded. These notifications are supported in each of the Meter, Octave, and Dosimeter tools.

SoundMeter’s new ability to run in the background allows it to continue to run long-term measurements while other (non-audio) apps are in use. A complimentary new feature also allows the individual tools in SoundMeter to run independently. This means that users can run measurements in the Meter, Octave, and Dosimeter tools simultaneously. Users no longer need to worry about resetting the current measurement by switching to another tool (whether intentionally or accidentally). This makes SoundMeter more robust in terms of its ability to preserve acquired data until it can be saved more permanently in an image or data file.

Watch App Screenshots

SoundMeter Pro Screen Shot - Apple Watch  SoundMeter Pro Screen Shot - Apple Watch

SoundMeter Pro Screen Shot - Apple Watch  SoundMeter Pro Screen Shot - Apple Watch

The new versions of SoundMeter also include the following improvements:

  • Lx (percentile-exceeded sound level) measurements now use the same time and frequency weighting as the Lp measurement, instead of automatically switching to Fast and A weighting.
  • Frequency weighting may now be set to Flat, A, or C in the Dosimeter options menu (previously, the Dosimeter only allowed A weighting).
  • Meter, Octave, and Dosimeter tools now use local notifications to alert you when a measurement has finished or when selected levels have exceeded user-defined thresholds.
  • This release corrects a bug that could cause the device sensitivity for the built-in mic or the headset input to get corrupted when changing input gain selection with device units set to “FS.”

Notes:

  1. Octave and Dosimeter tools, Lx measurement and data file export capability are sold separately within SoundMeter via in-app purchase. These capabilities are all included with SoundMeter Pro.
  2. This SoundMeter update will require you to restore your in-app purchases (you will not be charged again for upgrades you have already purchased).
  3. Apple Watch compatibility requires iOS 8.2 and iPhone 5 or later.

 

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SoundMeter Pro adds NC, RNC, NR reference curves and Octave data overlays

SoundMeter Pro 3 now offers the option to overlay noise criteria (NC), room noise criteria (RNC), or noise rating (NR) references curves over the live Octave analyzer bar graph. When NC or NR references curves are visible, SoundMeter Pro also calculates the NC or NR value, respectively. Speech interference level (SIL) is also calculated.

As in the recent update to SignalScope Pro, SoundMeter Pro’s Octave analyzer tool now offers the option to load whole or 1/3-octave spectrum data from exported Octave data files. Up to six sound spectrum curves can be overlaid on the live bar graph. It is possible to select the individual channels from which to load data when multiple channels of data exist within a single file. Also of note is the ability to overlay 1/3-octave data on a whole-octave bar graph and vice versa.

Screen Shot 2015-02-05 at 7.16.14 PM

SoundMeter Pro 3 also features the following improvements:

  • The Octave tool now calculates Lp, Leq, and Lx values, regardless of which is currently being displayed.
  • The Octave tool calculates the noise criterion (NC) and speech interference level (SIL) as defined in ANSI S12.2-2008, as well as the noise rating (NR) level.
  • SoundMeter Pro 3 employs a new plotting framework for real-time data graphs and high resolution image export.
  • GPS coordinates, altitude, and accuracy may now optionally be saved with Octave analyzer data. Retrieving location information now works on iOS 8 for the Meter and Dosimeter tools, which can also export more detailed location information.
  • When viewing details for data files saved within the app, the Open In button now works properly on both iOS 7 and iOS 8. Depending on the file type and the apps installed and/or configured on your iOS device, options may be presented for emailing, previewing, printing or copying the file, in addition to opening the file in another app.

SoundMeter 7 offers the same enhancements as SoundMeter Pro 3, although some of the new features require upgrades which are available in SoundMeter via in-app purchase. These upgrades include the Octave Analyzer RTA Tool, Percentile-Exceeded Sound Levels, and Data Acquisition Support.

Screen Shot 2014-10-15 at 11.36.39 AM copy

SoundMeter was the first sound level meter app ever available for iPhone and has been recognized as one of the most accurate and most reliable.

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SignalScope Pro 5 adds FFT and Octave data overlays, new hardware support

SignalScope Pro 5.0 and SignalScope 6.0*, both now available for download on the App Store, add support for up to 7 FFT spectrum curves to be loaded from existing data files (CSV, MAT, or tab-delimited text files previously saved from the FFT analyzer tool). Live FFT data can be overlaid on these curves. When loaded data files include multiple channels of FFT data, one or more of those channels can be selected for display in the current FFT plot. The addition of controls for adjusting the line thickness and opacity of loaded data makes it easy to visually distinguish between live and static FFT data. The FFT analyzer also now supports fractional-octave band smoothing of curves displayed in the plot. (It is important to note this is simply smoothing of the FFT curve—it does not simulate the behavior of true fractional octave band filtering, such as that offered by the Octave analyzer tool, which is included in SignalScope Pro.)

The Octave analyzer tool** also now offers the option to load whole or 1/3-octave spectrum data from data files. Up to six curves can be overlaid on the live bar graph. Again, it is possible to select the individual channels from which to load data when multiple channels of data exist within a single file.

Another significant addition to SignalScope and SignalScope Pro is direct support for iTestMic and iAudioInterface2 hardware from Studio Six Digital, as well as the Dayton UMM-6 USB measurement microphone. The new hardware support is consistent with the additions made to SoundMeter Pro 2.3.

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 11.56.20 AM

Also new in SignalScope Pro:

  • SignalScope Pro 5 employs a new plotting framework for real-time data graphs and high resolution image export.
  • The black color scheme now uses black status bar, toolbar, and tab bar backgrounds.
  • Support for drawing directly to an external screen (from iPad) has been removed in favor of screen mirroring, which is handled by iOS.
  • Audio hardware input and output options are now presented from a separate toolbar button, which looks like a microphone, on iPad, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
  • It is possible to adjust the line thickness of live and loaded frequency response data. The opacity of loaded data can also be adjusted in order to make the live data stand out in the graph.
  • The oscilloscope time scale can now be set from the oscilloscope options menu.
  • Saving an audio file no longer causes a crash when working with large oscilloscope time scales.

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 11.59.04 AM

Download SignalScope Pro 5.0

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* Data file export and import in SignalScope requires the Data Acquisition Upgrade, available via in-app purchase.

** The Octave analyzer tool is available in SignalScope via in-app purchase. It is included in SignalScope Pro.

RoomScope 4 with additional hardware support is now available for download

RoomScope 4.0 is now available for download on the App Store.

As with the recent update to IOScope, RoomScope now supports fractional octave band smoothing of 2Ch FR magnitude and coherence data (1/6, 1/12, and 1/24 octave bandwidths). RoomScope also adds built in support for iTestMic and iAudioInterface2 from Studio Six Digital and support for automatic downloading of sensitivity and frequency response data for the Dayton UMM-6 USB measurement microphone.

Other improvements to RoomScope include the following:

– RoomScope 4 employs a new plotting framework for real-time data graphs and high resolution image export.

– A bar graph is now used to display room acoustics parameters across octave or 1/3-octave frequency bands.

– Support for drawing directly to an external screen (from iPad) has been removed in favor of screen mirroring, which is handled by iOS.

– Audio hardware input and output options are now presented from a separate toolbar button, which looks like a microphone, on iPad, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

– It is possible to adjust the line thickness of plotted data.

Screen Shot 2015-01-19 at 1.03.05 PM

 

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Screen Shot 2015-01-19 at 1.27.49 PM

 

 

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SoundMeter adds support for iTestMic and iAudioInterface2

SoundMeter 6.3 and SoundMeter Pro 2.3 now officially support the iTestMic and iAudioInterface2 from Studio Six Digital.

With iTestMic, microphone sensitivity will be automatically loaded from calibration information stored in the iTestMic’s internal memory. This calibration information may have been set at the factory, or it may have been set from within an app, such as SoundMeter. In SoundMeter, it is possible to perform a sensitivity calibration without overwriting the calibration values stored in the iTestMic. SoundMeter can also store that information in the iTestMic for calibrated measurements in other apps that support the iTestMic. SoundMeter also supports selecting iTestMic’s high and low input ranges.

IMG_2555.PNG

Note: There is currently a bug that sometimes invalidates the calibration information stored within the iTestMic for the High mic input range. This bug affects use of the iTestMic with Studio Six Digital’s own apps, as well.

With iAudioInterface2, SoundMeter can select between mic and line input types, mic and line input gain ranges, and manual volume control options. The volume control knob of the iAudioInterface2 can be assigned to the input gain or the output gain, or it can be disabled entirely to avoid accidentally invalidating the current sensitivity calibration. Also from within the app, Phantom power and digital audio output may each be enabled or disabled. SoundMeter remembers each of these settings for the next time you connect iAudioInterface2 or relaunch the app.

IMG_2554.PNG

The new SoundMeter apps also support the Dayton UMM-6 USB measurement microphone. When the UMM-6 is detected, the user will be prompted to enter its serial number, which is typically printed on a label on the UMM-6. If a valid serial number is entered, SoundMeter will automatically download a calibration file from Dayton’s website and set the microphone sensitivity based on the information in the file.

Note: The Dayton UMM-6 must be connected to your iOS device via Apple’s USB camera adapter (either for Lightning or 30-pin dock connector, depending on your device). Sometimes the UMM-6 shows up in iOS as USB PnP Sound Device. If that happens, unplugging the UMM-6 and plugging it back in will generally solve the problem (it may take 2 or 3 tries). When properly connected, “UMM-6” will appear as the input device name in SoundMeter’s toolbar (at the top of the screen).

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IOScope 5 brings data overlays, spectrum smoothing, new hardware support

IOScope 5, which is now available for download on the App Store, employs a new plotting framework for real-time data graphs and high resolution image export. The new plotting capability also enables live frequency response data to be overlaid on up to 7 frequency response curves loaded from existing data files (CSV, MAT, or text data files exported from the Frequency tab in IOScope). An additional benefit is IOScope’s ability to smooth frequency response data into fractional octave bands (1/6, 1/12, and 1/24 octave bandwidths).

Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 11.14.38 AM copy

Other additions to the new version of IOScope include:

– Built in support for iTestMic and iAudioInterface2 from Studio Six Digital.

– Built-in support for automatic downloading of sensitivity data for the Dayton UMM-6 USB measurement microphone.

– Support for drawing directly to an external screen (from iPad) has been removed in favor of screen mirroring, which is handled by iOS.

– Audio hardware input and output options are now presented from a separate toolbar button, which looks like a microphone, on iPad, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

– It is possible to adjust the line thickness of live and loaded frequency response data. The opacity of loaded data can also be adjusted in order to make the live data stand out in the graph.

Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 11.15.09 AM copy

IOScope brings two-channel transfer function and impulse response analysis to iOS.

With IOScope, measure loudspeaker impedance, frequency response, and sensitivity. Measure a room impulse response. Tune a large sound reinforcement system, time-align a set of surround sound speakers, or optimize your home stereo. Determine the actual cutoff frequencies of your latest speaker crossover circuit, or teach your students the fundamentals of Fourier analysis of dynamic systems.

Measure frequency response magnitude and phase, coherence, and group delay. Time domain functions enable you to measure impulse response and auto/cross-correlation. IOScope includes a built-in signal generator for producing suitable excitation signals to analyze your system or device under test (DUT). The reference signal can be taken from the internal signal generator or from an external source (when using an external reference, a stereo or multi-channel audio input device, connected to the dock connector, is required).

Download IOScope 5 on the App Store.

SoundMeter Pro 2 is all about better hardware support

Like the recently released SignalScope Pro 4, SoundMeter Pro 2.0 can now uniquely identify USB audio devices attached to an iOS device and remember your settings for each audio device each time it is connected. Additionally, version 2 includes direct support for the miniDSP UMIK-1 USB measurement microphone. Sensitivity calibration and frequency response data for the UMIK-1 can be downloaded automatically, just by entering the UMIK-1’s serial number. Making calibrated sound level measurements is as easy as plugging in the UMIK-1 and typing in its serial number (the serial number only needs to be entered once, after which SoundMeter Pro will remember the microphone sensitivity).

SoundMeter Pro 2 supports manually switching between available audio inputs and outputs (i.e. if a headset microphone is connected, as well as a USB microphone, SoundMeter Pro allows you to manually switch between the built-in microphone, the headset microphone, and the USB microphone in the software without connecting or disconnecting any hardware). SoundMeter Pro 2 also supports manually switching between available microphones on devices, such as iPhones and some iPads, that have more than one built-in microphone.

Also new in SoundMeter Pro 2.0:

– Nominal input sensitivities have been updated for built-in microphones and headset inputs on iOS 8.

– On iOS 8, low, mid, and high input gain settings are available on all supported devices, for built-in microphones and headset input. Each gain setting now has an associated nominal input sensitivity. User calibrations are saved independently for each gain setting.

– A text formatting issue in MAT-file export has been corrected.

– Minor bug fixes and cosmetic enhancements.

– Apple’s Lightning to USB Camera Adapter or iPad Camera Connection Kit is required for connecting USB Audio devices to your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad.

– SoundMeter Pro 2 requires iOS 7 or later.

SoundMeter Pro Screenshot iPhone 1

Similar features have been added to SoundMeter 6.0, although select in-app upgrades may be required (available via in-app purchase).

Download SoundMeter Pro

 

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